"Traditionally, odd numbers are considered good luck in Japan," the Embassy Chef remarked. "We have displayed this San Ten Mori (three dish set) on Japanese 'washi' paper that is arranged to evoke the image of a twelve-layered ceremonial kimono," he continued.
The Embassy Chef team chose three dishes for this display, Scallop & Pumpkin Paste Toji-ae, Salmon and Ikura (salmon roe), and Smoked Chicken with Rosemary Flavor.
The scallop & pumpkin paste toji-ae is a dish often eaten in winter (as toji means winter solstice and ae means mixing), and is usually chilled, then eaten. It includes scallops, konjac (yam potato cake), shimeji mushrooms and asparagus that were all seasoned separately and later combined. The salmon and ikura are mixed with grated daikon radish and yuzu (a citrus fruit) for taste. The chicken was smoked first and then pan seared to make the skin crispier.
"We chose chicken for the final dish to act as a balance to the seafood in the other two dishes," the Embassy Chef explained. "Leaving the chicken skin on was deliberate, as we usually eat the chicken skin in Japan."